The Second Half
Yes, it really is the second half of 2017. Six months have come and gone. Now is the time to look at the numbers for the first six months of this year. Is giving trending up, down or about the same? What are the underlying reasons for the trend? And please be sure to work on these numbers within the context of the previous two to three years for the same time period. This will help in responding to the numbers.
There is a great resource to look at all kinds of statistics related to your own congregation at www.umdata.org. You can create graphs related to membership, attendance, professions of faith and other helpful information. You can even look at the numbers of similar congregations across the country or in the conference. This may help in interpreting financial numbers.
The one thing you cannot afford to do is to do nothing. The finance committee does not need to take the summer off and then look at numbers in September. July is an important time to look at the data for the previous six months. Generosity does not just happen.